I know this has been discussed here a plenty, whether to watch the reboot or not, boycott or not. That is not my concern. I believe everyone should watch or not watch, boycott or not boycott, follow your heart. And I’m not here to talk anyone out of it either way.
What I want to talk about, which I have not seen discussed to my satisfaction, is the idea that we must HEAR, FEEL, BE OPEN TO, the economic insecurity of those who felt they must vote for Trump. It’s a meme that’s as overpowering as bad perfume. You can’t get away from it these days. And every time you think you have, all it takes is, for God’s Sake, a re-boot of Roseanne, to start it all up again.
I don’t recall a similar cataclysm of guilt on the right’s side when Will and Grace re-booted. I don’t recall conservative pundits writing about how, gee, maybe we really missed the mark when it came to the social anxiety of being gay in those days, or how it might have effected where you got hired, or how far up you could go in a company. Nope, don’t remember that.
But, boyo, talk about a sure guilt bait for sympathetic, empathetic liberals. And I should know, I AM a sympathetic, empathetic liberal. And guilt that I haven’t done everything I can to be a decent open minded person, is a worm on a hook I have to concentrate on not biting on before I think.
Look, here’s the deal, and I really don’t get why it isn’t been said often and loudly. EVERYONE suffers economic anxiety these days, save for the top earners in our country, what, the top 5%?
Let’s start by talking about the retail industry, the biggest employer of Americans, by far. Brick and mortar retail employment is suffering FAR MORE than the coal industry or ANY manufacturing industry in America, simply because from north to south and east to west in this country, with every store you pass every day in your car, remember, they must all be staffed, and they can only be staffed according to profit.
These days, getting a full time job in retail w/benefits is becoming close to looking like a unicorn. And, most of the people who depend on those jobs are women…single mothers, wives of husbands who can no longer work. You want to talk about coal miner country?! You want to talk about the “rust belt?!” Well, I’d like to talk back to you about “retail country” which is in every state of this country, from top to bottom, and right to left.
Then, let’s move on to white collar jobs, lest you think that’s where the picnic is. Truth is, in the Great Recession, many companies adopted a “lean journey” approach. Understandable. Problem is, many companies never amended that journey, despite an improvement in the economy. Many white collar workers are doing twice, three times the work they used to do, and raises are small, bonuses are rare.
You’d think with this “better economy” that it would be an employee’s market. I’m telling you, it is NOT, with a couple of exceptions, such as the tech industry, and for the young. Because folks, people are scared to death to leave their jobs and their healthcare benefits these days, and that wouldn’t be true if good jobs were hanging off the low or even mid branches. THEY ARE NOT.
And God help you, and your fancy degree, and your years of experience, if you get laid off at say, 55 or 60. Good luck. And THAT is happening all the time these days, good economy or not, because the math works for stock holders. No matter how good you are at what you do because you’ve been doing it so long, they can buy THREE of you at just 10 to 15 years younger than you. Which would be doable if one could actually retire at 60 to 65 the way folks used to be able to do.
Now, let’s look at employment possibilities for our minorities. How do we think those stack up? Do we actually believe it’s just as easy to get ahead in this country if you are black or hispanic, or God forbid, Muslim?
So, for crying out loud DO NOT talk to me about the “economic anxieties” of Trump voters, DO NOT ask me to cry a river over them, to the exception of most ALL OF US who have economic anxieties. BIG ONES. Where are all the stories of those who voted for Clinton, and their economic woes? “Nowhere Man,” as the Beatles once wrote.
And I’m so sick of it I could scream, which is usually when I write a diary. My way of screaming.
NO SIR. I will not excuse Trump voters for their economic anxiety, when so many I know, including myself, who are working like crazy to help, not hurt, are suffering the same. NO MA’M, I don’t want to or care to understand why their economic anxiety is more important than mine or many I know who would never dream of voting for a racist, mysogynist, authoritarian, narcissistic, incompetent idiot, AND keep on defending him well after they have all seen what a disaster he has been in office.
Again, we live in a culture where economic anxiety is a guarantee, and the idea that if belongs JUST to coal miners, or rust belters, or working class people is BULL SHIT. And, the idea that it’s an excuse for supporting the likes of Trump is also, BULL SHIT.
NO. NO. And again NO. I’m not going to try to reason or talk to these people. They don’t care about my economic anxiety, or my fellow Democratic/progressive friends who are likewise, suffering a lot of economic anxiety.
No, I am not stepping up to understand them any more than I think I DO understand them. And I don’t think it’s about economic anxiety, and I’m damned tired of hearing the meme that it is. And I’m damned tired of the media not covering all we Democrats, progressives who have the SAME DAMN ECONOMIC ANXIETIES.
Really folks, this business of the poor, poor Trumpster, with their economic anxiety that is somehow more important than all those Democrats out there who are hanging on by the chin of their chinny chin chins too, WITHOUT supporting a guy like Trump. OR, with less partisanship and perhaps the biggest point of all, without sacrificing our Democratic process, despite our own economic anxieties.
Our economic culture is changing, as has always been true, and we will all have to find a way to change along with it, without giving up our most cherished ideals. And that is EXACTLY what I think too many are asking of me, when they ask me to “understand” the “economic anxiety” of the Trump voter, and ignore their solutions to that, as they have voted for them, over and over again.